These meatballs in tomato sauce are the perfect quick and easy dinner. Juicy and tender homemade meatballs cooked in a simple rustic Italian style tomato sauce. They're easy to make and only use ingredients from Aldi!
These meatballs are so easy and quick enough to make on a weeknight, but they're special and cosy enough to make for a casual Sunday dinner too. Dry meatballs are a thing of the past with some simple tips and a gorgeous recipe. Cooking the meatballs in the sauce helps them stay moist and tender and infuses them with so much flavour.
A great meatball consists of 2 crucial elements:
So, for these meatballs, we're using a mix of beef and pork. Pork brings so much flavour to the mix and some fat. The fat is crucial to keep the meatballs moist and for that rich flavour. The egg and some milk help to bind it all together.
Quick & Easy Pork Meatballs
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Ingredients needed for homemade meatballs
- pork and beef mince mixed
- fresh rosemary
- dried oregano
- Italian style herbs
- pasta mix
- Grana Padano (parmesan) cheese
For the sauce
- red onion
- tomato puree
How to make meatballs in tomato sauce
- Make the meatball mix, by placing the mince and add in the herbs, the egg and a splash of milk. Using your hands or a wooden spoon, gently mix and form into meatballs. The key to keeping the mince from going tough is being gentle when you roll the meatballs.
- Using milk is the secret to getting juicy, moist meatballs every single time making them light and spongy.
- The next step is mixing your meat mixture until the ingredients are just incorporated with your hands. Full pieces of ground meat should still be visible.
- Roll your meatballs with lightly oiled hands to prevent the meat from sticking to your fingers, while adding a little extra moisture into each meatball.
- Heat some oil in a pan for browning the meatballs. We just fry them quickly to get colour on them and to form a golden crust and they finish cooking in the sauce. I used a nonstick skillet for this, but you can use a high sided regular skillet and make the sauce in it too.
- Once the meatballs are browned all the way around remove them from the pan and set onto a baking tray. You may need to do this in batches to brown all the meatballs. This recipe makes 20 meatballs.
- To make the sauce, heat some oil in a pan and soften the onion and garlic on medium heat. Add in some thyme and the tomato puree. Give it all a good stir and add in the passata. Add the meatballs to the sauce and simmer for about 10 minutes until the meatballs are cooked through.
Storing, freezing and reheating meatballs
You'll more than likely have leftover meatballs. This recipe makes 20, and they are filling. To freeze them, simply let them cool down completely in the sauce once they're cooked through. Divide the meatballs evenly between containers and spoon the sauce over top. The meatballs and tomato sauce can be stored in the fridge for up to 4 days and in the freezer for up to 3 months.
To reheat, defrost the meatballs in the fridge overnight or at room temperature for a couple of hours and heat in the microwave until hot all the way through. Or, reheat in a pan on the hob (stove) until the meatballs are hot and the sauce is bubbling.
If you're really wanting to elevate these meatballs then you can make them as directed then cover with the shredded mozzarella (may I suggest the whole pack) and place under the grill for about 10 minutes until the cheese is melted, brown and bubbling.
What to serve with meatballs in tomato sauce
Let's be honest. We're all thinking the same thing. Giant tangles of steaming pasta noodles. But these meatballs would be amazing served with a big salad and a large loaf of crusty bread.
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